Party in danger zone

2014-12-24 00:00

A DUSTY military camp in Kandahar, Afghanistan, is where Howick local Jack Haskins Jr will be celebrating his Christmas this year.

Prone to surprise rocket attacks and being away from the loving arms of his family, Haskins will be braving his Christmas with Nato (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) military, and a crew of paramedics.

“We work every day here, so myself and fellow paramedics will be on call and standby for any emergencies within and outside the Kandahar military base,” he said.

“There was a base attack the other day. A few rockets landed in the base followed by a ground attack outside the fence. Fortunately there were no ­injuries.”

Haskins said it is his first Christmas away from home but he had decided to make the best of it.

“A bunch of us here will be having a Christmas barbecue and a secret ­Santa.

“We are all good mates here so I’m sure Christmas Day in the camp will be lots of fun even though we’re all miles away from friends and family,” said Haskins.

Meanwhile, south-west from Kandahar and 6 595 km as the crow flies, Durbanite and paramedic Ceron Jacobs thought she had to spend her Christmas on an oil rig in the middle of the Congo, but managed to pull strings to fly home on Christmas Eve.

Jacobs said she had to come home to her family for Christmas as she had missed out on so much already.

“I have been in the Congo for my birthday, my daughter’s birthday, and my partner Shawn’s birthday and I couldn’t see myself having Christmas here as well,” she said.

“When I thought I would be here for Christmas I did prepare myself mentally but I would much rather be at home this time of the year.

“Family means a lot to me, something I have realised even more whilst working out here, and that’s why I am done and won’t be coming back after completing my contract.”


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